Summary: Big Idea: The child of God may be shaken but remains safe in God’s unshakable kingdom.

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Hebrews 12:25-29


Hebrews 12:25-29

Big Idea: The child of God may be shaken but remains safe in God’s unshakable kingdom.

Introduction: Are you being shaken these days? If so, take comfort, you are one among many, if not all, people in this city who have experienced shaking. Thousands of people are fleeing our city. Some do to protect themselves from the dreaded and deadly Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). I have not visited the airport but was told that it looks like a huge hospital, with most people wearing mask. And who would not with daily reports of more people catching the virus. Our schools have been closed indefinitely. Whole residential blocks and all the residents are forcibly quarantined? Even hospitals have been closed. Doctors, nurses, hospital workers are some of the most affected people. It must be one time in the lives of these modern-day heroes that they feel the burden of their calling.

How should Followers live these days? Some present a brave face saying, they’re not all affected, Jesus is with them. Someone told me that just as “the angel of death” spared every family from the plague when it saw the blood applied on the doorpost of the house” so she believes that because of Jesus she and the whole family where she works will not be affected also.

I must confess that a reading of the Old Testament suggest such truth. The righteous will not be shaken. Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion which cannot be moved. God’s people will pass through the fire, yes, but they will not be burned. They will pass through deep rivers but will not be drowned. These and many more promises in the Old Testament suggest that God’s people will not be affected by calamities, by sufferings of any kind.

But I must warn you today that this is a misunderstanding of the Old Testament scriptures. This is reading something that was not meant to by the writers. It is claiming something that God never promised. When Christians declare sincerely that they are free from any disease, or problem, or suffering because they are God’s people, they have move beyond the guarantees that Scriptures make of God’s people.

Let me explain. When the psalmist wrote that those who trust in the Lord will not be moved or shaken, he is using the term “shaken” to refer to God’s judgment. He will not be shaken in the sense that whatever happens, he is on God’s side. He will not be a recipient of God’s judgment. Only the unrighteous are judged by God. Only sinners are shaken by God’s judgment. This does not mean however that God’s people do not experience the terrible effects of war, or famine, or plagues, etc. It means that whatever happens they are part of God’s covenant people.

The New Testament writers support this view. The church, God’s people are no longer exempted from sufferings. They could expect sufferings and trials. Calamities and ensuing sufferings are to be suffered, but now with a different attitude. No longer are sufferings to be seen as “judgments” intended for the unrighteous. Sufferings are now seen as God’s favorite refining agent.

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